An Absolute Firecracker

By: Chris Arora

A controversial mental mistake has been made, but there is no doubt the goalkeeper will never live this moment down. Whether or not the pass was off his shin or his foot is irrelevant now as the ball is placed a mere yard away from the goalie’s box. Alan Shearer, a legend for Newcastle, lines up behind the ball surrounded by 2 fellow teammates. All of the opposing team’s players line up in unison on the goalie’s line with the hopes of crowding out the entire net. A few Newcastle players join their barricade in hopes of blocking the opposing team’s vision.

Newcastle is on the doorstep of tying the match, so close yet so far away. The players ready themselves for the indirect free-kick. A rare occasion in soccer, an indirect free-kick provides a challenging but prime goal scoring opportunity. A quick pause sets in like a calm before the storm. Suddenly, a Newcastle player, Nolberto Solano, emphatically swipes his foot across the ball. Several of the West Brom players come darting towards Shearer and the ball.  There was no touch … it was just a fake. Having just been fooled, the West Brom players slowly retreat to their line. Solano waggles his finger, in an almost sarcastic fashion. As the players are walking back, Solano quickly touches the ball. A few West Brom players throw their bodies forward, risking everything to prevent a goal. It is too late. They cannot react quick enough and Shearer laces the ball into the bottom right-hand corner of the net, what a firecracker! GOLAZOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO, everyone starts cheering in harmony.

Here lies the beauty of soccer. Anyone, on any team, at any given time, can join the conversation on who has scored the greatest goals of all time. Creativity, skill, and trickery all tied up into 10 short seconds. Joy for one side agony for the other. What would seem to be a rather dull pairing of Newcastle United vs West Bromwich Albion has produced such a memorable and captivating goal fans worldwide will always remember. As soccer fans we live for moments like these, moments where we can tip our caps and applaud. For many this is why we cherish the game, we relish in the creativity and innovativeness. We live for those moments where we can jump out of our seats, going crazy as if we had just scored the goal ourselves.



[1] “Newcastle see off West Brom,” BBC Sports, February 16, 2016,

[2] “Alan Shearer Freekick”. YouTube.